Michael Krzywonos, who along with his wife Pat and their daughter Kathryn, has been a longtime parishioner of St. John Paul II Church in Pawtucket, is a staunch defender of pro-life issues and will be honored with a Lumen Gentium award in the category of Respect Life at this year’s banquet.
In 2000, he joined the now St. John Paul II Knights of Columbus as a council charter member. He has served St. John Paul II Council as Grand Knight, organizing four service programs in each of the following six categories both years he served as the council’s leader: Church, Community, Council, Family, Youth, and Culture of Life.
“Michael and his wife Pat have served his council and parish, as well as the Rhode Island State Council as Culture of Life Chair-couple since 2008. Michael’s leadership in this area has engaged the 47 councils active in our diocese and continues to bring awareness to the plight of our most vulnerable lost to abortion,” said St. John Paul II Pastor Father Michael A. Sisco in nominating Krzywonos for the award.
Krzywonos directs the Knights of Columbus annual Pro-Life Dinner every January which provides funding for the Diocese of Providence’s Project Gabriel mission, the Mother of Life Center, the Little Flower Home and Pro-Life Across American Billboards. He has also been instrumental in coordinating efforts to purchase four ultra-sound machines utilizing a Knights of Columbus matching funds campaign.
He also serves on the Board for the Diocese of Providence Human Life Guild and the Rhode Island Right to Life Committee, and communicates their respective mission and current efforts to the 6,700 members of the Knights and their families located throughout the diocese.
A special counselor for Project Gabriel, Krzywonos has attended the annual March For Life in Washington, D.C., for the past six years.
In Rhode Island, he has been a strong advocate for the passage of a “Choose Life” license plate design, and hope to see this effort come to fruition one day as it has in many other states across the nation.
For the past five years, Michael has served as co-chairman of the Knights of Columbus Silver Rose program, traveling almost every day each October to bring a rosary prayer service and the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe to different parishes, councils and community centers throughout the state in a nationwide effort to bring awareness and a prayerful response to unborn baby girls and boys, especially those that may be in harm’s way from abortion.
Since 2008, Krzywonos has served as State Co-coordinator for the 40 Days for Life Campaign, encouraging others to actively participate and raise awareness to a culture of life.
“Women considering having an abortion need to know there are other options out there,” Krzywonos said of what has motivated him to give so much of his time to supporting pro-life causes.
He believes that God empowers those in his midst to protect the unborn and others threatened by a culture among us that does not support pro-life issues.
“It’s God working through me and others, but we don’t really know it. The pieces just come together,” he said.
Whenever there is an issue before the State Legislature that threatens the unborn or infirm he works to rally supporters to turn out in defense of life.
“I make sure the Knights get out an action alert,” he said.
Despite the long hours he invests serving the pro-life cause Krzywonos said he would not have it any other way.
“I’m getting much more out of it than I am putting in,” he said.
Over the next several weeks, Rhode Island Catholic will feature profiles of the winners of the diocese’s 2018 Lumen Gentium Awards, which formally recognize those who ‘toil in the vineyard’ in service to the Lord, and minister to those in greatest need in their parish or community. The honorees will be awarded during a dinner at Twin River Event Center in Lincoln on Wednesday, May 16. Guests wishing to purchase tickets to the dinner — whose proceeds will support Diocesan Hispanic Ministries — are asked to register online at www.dioceseofprovidence.org/lumen-gentium-awards. For any questions about the event, please call 401-277-2121.